REPORT the
Khapra Beetle

Khapra Beetle

The Khapra Beetle threatens our grains. Learn to spot it and report it.

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Photo Credits

The Khapra Beetle (Trogoderma granarium) is one of the world’s most destructive pests of stored grain products and seeds. Its feeding damage often spoils 30 percent of the product; up to 70 percent damage has been reported. Previous U.S. detections of this tiny beetle have required massive, long-term and costly control and eradication efforts. Established infestations are difficult to control because the beetle can survive without food for long periods, requires little moisture, hides in tiny cracks and crevices, and is relatively resistant to many insecticides and fumigants.

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QUICK FACTS

Where Is the Threat?

  • Because of their warm climates, the Khapra beetle has the most potential for establishment in Arizona, California, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.

  • The Khapra beetle is a destructive pest of stored grain and other dried plant—as well as animal—products.

  • It is able to survive almost anywhere in storage facilities that are protected from cold environments.

  • This pest is known for its “dirty eating” behavior; by feeding only a little on each grain, one tiny beetle can damage a surprising amount of stored product.

  • Prefers hot, dry areas.

  • See Pest Tracker for details >

What's at Risk?

  • Wheat

  • Barley

  • Oats

  • Rye

  • Maize

  • Rice

  • Flour

  • Malt

  • Noodles

  • Stored agricultural products, including spices, grains and packaged foods

Source of the Threat

  • The Khapra beetle is native to India and has become established in other countries in the Mediterranean, Middle East, Asia and Africa.

  • In 1953, an extensive infestation was found in California. Subsequent surveys revealed its presence in Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas. These infestations were eradicated in 1996. During 1980-1997, several other infestations were discovered and eradicated in isolated areas of California, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Texas.

Signs and Symptoms

  • Visible Khapra beetle or larvae. The adult beetle is brown in color and small, between 2-3 millimeters long. (One millimeter is the thickness of a dime.) Adults possess wings, but aren’t known to fly.

  • Small brown beetles, larvae or cast skins infesting grain, dried food and cereal products.

  • Similar infestation signs on almost any dried animal matter, including dog food.

What You Can Do








What You Can Do

  • Find out if you’re traveling to a country where Khapra beetle is known to occur. Visit www.aphis.usda.gov/travel to view a travel alert that lists these countries.

  • Don’t bring rice, soybeans, Cicer species (e.g., chickpeas), and safflower seeds from these countries into the United States. Check the Web site above for any updates.

  • Comply with U.S. Customs and Border Protection inspections when traveling internationally. Rice from India and other countries where the Khapra beetle exists is prohibited from entering the United States and subject to penalties of up to $1,000 or more.

  • Buy imported packaged food only from reputable dealers.

  • Report any sightings of this pest in imported foods at HungryPests.com.

  • Know and follow the quarantines in your area and learn to leave Hungry Pests behind